AMERICAN STAFFORDSHIRE TERRIER
EASE OF TRAINING •••••
GOOD WITH KIDS ••••••••••
LIFE SPAN 10 TO 13 YEARS
MALE: 18 TO 19 INCHES
FEMALE: 17 TO 18 INCHES
MALE: 28 TO 38 POUNDS
FEMALE: 24 TO 34 POUNDS
The American Staffordshire Terriers (often called Amstaffs) bring great joy to their families.
They are loyal, fun-loving, fearless and affectionate. Sometimes confused with Pit Bull Terriers, the two breeds share an ancestral bloodline and were originally bred to fight, but the American Staffordshire line has become much more gentle in the last 100 years.
Despite their reputation as an aggressive breed, the Amstaff is a true family dog. Loving and playful, this breed will play with children in the yard, then happily snuggle with mom and dad on the couch.
American Staffordshire Terriers require daily exercise to maintain their muscle tone. They enjoy long walks and playing in the yard.
Because of their need for activity, they are best suited for a home with a fenced-in yard with plenty of room to run and play fetch. If raised alongside other animals, a well-bred American Staffordshire Terrier will do fine, but if adopting an older dog, it's best the family not have other pets.
Even the most gentle Staffordshire can attack if challenged by another animal, or if he fears his owner is in danger.
A bored American Staffordshire Terrier is a destructive American Staffodshire Terrier. Plenty of exercise and stimulation is key to maintaining the integrity of a home's furnishings. This breed loves to chew, so leaving plenty of bones or rawhide around the house can also protect shoes, sofas, and table legs from a bored Amstaff.
Aggression towards other animals is the biggest issue with the Amstaff. As long as the dog comes from a reputable breeder with a gentle bloodline, the Amstaff will not be aggressive toward people. Because they were bred to fight, and because they are loyal to their families, if the Amstaff feels threatened by another dog, he may become aggressive.
This breed should be treated as a family member, and never left tied up alone, outside.
Serious behavioral problems and aggression can develop if an Amstaff is neglected and left without the company of loving humans.
Amstaffs are strong-willed dogs, so training requires a lot of confidence and patience. They should be trained and socialized as early as possible – every well behaved American Staffordshire Terrier is a goodwill ambassador for the breed.
Positive reinforcement should be employed as the training method for an Amstaff, as harsh discipline can lead to mistrust.
Socialization should also be done early. Amstaffs should be taught to be friendly to people, and that children are fun playmates, and non-threatening.
Staffordshire Bull Terriers come in a variety of colors including red, fawn, white, black, or blue, or any of these colors with white, as well as brindle or brindle with white. The AKC standard prefers that the dog not be more than 80% white and a liver color is not accepted. Predominately white with tan, black, or brown markings.
They have smooth coats that lie flat and close to the skin., rough, or broken coats; rough coats should be professionally hand-stripped
Staffordshire Terriers have short hair so hardly shed at all.
Staffordshire Terriers are very easy to groom – if the dog is taught to be handled from an early age. They can be quite stubborn and sensitive to having their feet touched, so it is important to get them used to being handled as puppies. Their short coats shed minimally throughout the year, and heavily twice a year as the seasons change.
Weekly brushing can keep the coat manageable and shiny. Amstaffs don't carry much of a “dog odor” and bathing is only required a few times per year, unless the dog likes to play in the muck.
Amstaffs are prone to bad breath, so regular teeth cleaning should be part of the grooming regimen. Many owners brush teeth weekly or even more frequently too keep harmful and bad-smelling bacteria at bay.
• Health concerns associated with this breed include allergies, cancer, cataracts, congenital heart disease, cranial crutiate ligament rupture, hip dysplasia, hives, hypothyroidism, progressive retinal atrophy and spinocerebellar ataxia.
• You will need lots of patience to train him as he has a mind of his own.
• Needs to be sociolized early because aggression towards other animals can be a concern otherwise.
• You need to keep him occupied because a bored American Staffordshire Terrier is a destructive American Staffordshire.
• The develop bad breath if teeth are not brushed regularly.
• Sometimes confused with a Pit Bull.
• Because of the stigma against the breed, some homeowners insurance policies will not cover American Staffordshire Terriers, so potential owners should consult their insurance companies before committing to this dog.